Ricky Ponting admits he shed a tear as the realisation dawned that three of his long-term team- mates -- Shane Warne, Glenn McGrath and Justin Langer -- had played their last Test match for Australia.
The Australian captain said his abiding emotion was satisfaction rather than revenge, as his crack side demolished the tourists by 10 wickets before lunch on the fourth day of the final Ashes Test.
It was Australia's first Ashes clean sweep over England since Warwick Armstrong's team's achievement in 1921.
The retirements of the trio of Test greats dominated the final Sydney Test of the series, with Ponting revealing that he urged the team to do their absolute best to send them out as winners.
"It's not so much the end result of the 5-0 series, but probably just the occasion with the three guys finishing up," said Ponting, who was named player of the series.
"I admit I shed a tear out on the ground, and even when we took the last wicket, to think that this would be the last time that we would be walking off the ground with Glenn and Shane.
"I was hoping to get a chance to bat with Langer, I was a bit dirty on Matty Hayden not getting out," he said with a smile.
"To realise that was the last opportunity that I was going to have was a pretty emotional time," Ponting said.
Ponting was decried as the Australian captain who lost the Ashes after England's 2005 triumph, and he has been driving the Australian team throughout this series.